In prison for “posing as a Muslim”

A story from Pakistan a couple of months ago:

A 72-year-old British doctor is in prison in Pakistan for “posing as a Muslim”, charges that reveal an escalating ideological fight that often spills over into violence.

Masood Ahmad is a quiet, reserved widower who returned to Pakistan to open a pharmacy in 1982 after decades of working in London to pay his children’s school fees, his family said.

He is also an Ahmadi, a sect that consider themselves Muslim but believe in a prophet after Mohammed. A 1984 Pakistani law declared them non-Muslims, and Ahmadis can be jailed for three years for posing as a Muslim or outraging Muslims’ feelings.

Some mullahs promise that killing Ahmadis earns a place in heaven. Leaflets list their home addresses.

Ahmadis are under a lot of pressure in Pakistan.

Ahmad was arrested in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore last month when two men posing as patients questioned him about his faith and used mobile phones to secretly record him reading a verse from the Koran.

“He (the patient) said you are like a father to me, please help me with some questions,” said the doctor’s older brother, Nasir Ahmad. “When (my brother) answered, they began beating him and dragged him outside by his neck.”

One of his accusers, Islamic teacher Muhammad Ihsan, told Reuters that Ahmad had preached to them illegally.

What a horrible thing to do – ask a kind man for help and then beat him and drag him around by his neck when he gives the help.

Mullahs have twice sought the arrest of an entire town of Ahmadis – 60,000 people – for holding religious celebrations. Residents were serving food, giving out sweets and displaying bunting, the complaints said.

“We would not have a problem with them if they did not use the name of Islam and the symbols of Islam,” said Tahir Ashrafi, head of the powerful Ulema Council of clerics.

Oh mind your own business, you hateful fanatic.






  1. says

    You just know these idiots’ faith is weak, and they’re terrified of losing it altogether. If they really believed Islam was true, they would be indifferent to expressions of other beliefs.

  2. stevebowen says

    Religions fear heresy even more than apostasy or external criticism as it dilutes the message. The inquisition were way harder on heretics than atheists.

  3. says

    The religion is called Ahmadiyya and I can see why orthodox Muslims hate and fear it: the Ahmadis hold that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835–1908) was the Mahdi (a redeemer prophet who would come at the End Times) and had been sent to strip away the violent rhetoric, fanaticism and intolerance of modern Islam and restore it to the “pure” religion of Muhammad (never mind that Muhammad himself was a warlord and instigated many very aggressive wars of conquest.)

    What’s not to like?

  4. Omar Puhleez says

    Islam is a terrible religion. That said, some of the sects seeking to redeem it have merit relative to its mainstream.

  5. Pierce R. Butler says

    … reading a verse from the Koran. … had preached to them illegally.

    So non-Official Muslims™ cannot legally read aloud from the Official Muslim™ holy book?!?

  6. RJW says

    The Ahmadis also stuffer persecution in ‘moderate’ Indonesia, sometimes with fatal results, the police are often reported as ‘standing by’ while Ahmadis are murdered or assaulted by Moslem mobs.


    Yes, one of the most merciless Crusades in history was conducted by the Catholic Church against the Cathar heretics in Southern France.


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